Monday, April 20, 2009

New Islamic bank to have $200 billion in capital; Rushdi Siddiqui on 'opportunity' for Islamic finance

The mega Islamic bank being planned for launch in Bahrain at some point this year will have total capital of $200 billion, according to Sheikh Saleh Kamel, president of Saudi bank Dallah Albaraka Group. The banks shareholders will include the Islamic Development Bank, Albaraka Group, Kuwait Real Estate Bank and '10 other banks'. $100 billion will be raised in investment funds and sukuk. There is a $3 billion IPO that will be listed in Dubai and Bahrain, probably in the fourth quarter. The new bank will be named either "Al-Istikhlaf or Al-Emaar" according to Kamel.

Rushdi Siddiqui, the head of Islamic finance for ThomsonReuters and formerly head of Dow Jones Islamic Market Indexes is quoted describing the 'unprecedented' opportunity available to Islamic finance:
"This is an unprecedented opportunity to seek a 'new or improved' financial intermediation, investing and trading paradigm. In fact I'd go as far as saying that this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to present an ethical alternative to what has been described as an unscrupulous, often highly leveraged instruments, derivatives based without the base investments. Shari'ah law really could be an interesting pathway for G-20 countries on asset backed/based financial intermediation, investing and trading"

France may be the next country in Europe to encourage the development of Islamic finance alongside conventional banking like the U.K. has done. Between 5 and 10% of the country's population is Muslim.

The huge interest in the Indonesian sovereign sukuk may pave the way for other sukuk issuance. The global credit crisis and revisions to AAOIFI standards for sukuk have significantly dampened issuance of new sukuk in the past 4 or 5 quarters.

1 comment:

sam said...